"If the judges interpret the laws themselves, and suffer none else to interpret, they may easily make, of the laws, [a shredded] shipman's hose!" - King James I of England, around 1616.

“No class of the community ought to be allowed freer scope in the expression or publication of opinions as to the capacity, impartiality or integrity of judges than members of the bar. They have the best opportunities of observing and forming a correct judgment. They are in constant attendance on the courts. Hundreds of those who are called on to vote never enter a court-house, or if they do, it is only at intervals as jurors, witnesses or parties. To say that an attorney can only act or speak on this subject under liability to be called to account and to be deprived of his profession and livelihood by the very judge or judges whom he may consider it his duty to attack and expose, is a position too monstrous to be entertained for a moment under our present system,” Justice Sharwood in Ex Parte Steinman and Hensel, 95 Pa 220, 238-39 (1880).

“This case illustrates to me the serious consequences to the Bar itself of not affording the full protections of the First Amendment to its applicants for admission. For this record shows that [the rejected attorney candidate] has many of the qualities that are needed in the American Bar. It shows not only that [the rejected attorney candidate] has followed a high moral, ethical and patriotic course in all of the activities of his life, but also that he combines these more common virtues with the uncommon virtue of courage to stand by his principles at any cost.

It is such men as these who have most greatly honored the profession of the law. The legal profession will lose much of its nobility and its glory if it is not constantly replenished with lawyers like these. To force the Bar to become a group of thoroughly orthodox, time-serving, government-fearing individuals is to humiliate and degrade it.” In Re Anastaplo, 18 Ill. 2d 182, 163 N.E.2d 429 (1959), cert. granted, 362 U.S. 968 (1960), affirmed over strong dissent, 366 U.S. 82 (1961), Justice Black, Chief Justice Douglas and Justice Brennan, dissenting.

" I do not believe that the practice of law is a "privilege" which empowers Government to deny lawyers their constitutional rights. The mere fact that a lawyer has important responsibilities in society does not require or even permit the State to deprive him of those protections of freedom set out in the Bill of Rights for the precise purpose of insuring the independence of the individual against the Government and those acting for the Government”. Lathrop v Donohue, 367 US 820 (1961), Justice Black, dissenting.

"The legal profession must take great care not to emulate the many occupational groups that have managed to convert licensure from a sharp weapon of public defense into blunt instrument of self-enrichment". Walter Gellhorn, "The Abuse of Occupational Licensing", University of Chicago Law Review, Volume 44 Issue 1, September of 1976.

“Because the law requires that judges no matter how corrupt, who do not act in the clear absence of jurisdiction while performing a judicial act, are immune from suit, former Judge Ciavarella will escape liability for the vast majority of his conduct in this action. This is, to be sure, against the popular will, but it is the very oath which he is alleged to have so indecently, cavalierly, baselessly and willfully violated for personal gain that requires this Court to find him immune from suit”, District Judge A. Richard Caputo in H.T., et al, v. Ciavarella, Jr, et al, Case No. 3:09-cv-00286-ARC in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, Document 336, page 18, November 20, 2009. This is about judges who were sentencing kids to juvenile detention for kickbacks.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Criminal contempt for criticism of a judge - the revival of seditious libel in the United States

There was a crime of seditious libel in the Old Country - the good old England.

Here is how its origins were described in a 1983 law review article:

It was supposedly replaced in the U.S. by the 1st Amendment, saying the following:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Then, the U.S. Congress delegated rule-making authority in criminal cases to the U.S. Supreme Court, and the U.S. Supreme Court produced a Rule 42, containing the following clause:

"If the criminal contempt involves disrespect toward or criticism of a judge, that judge is disqualified from presiding at the contempt trial or hearing unless the defendant consents."

Wait a minute - but, the U.S. Congress:

  • had no authority to re-delegate to the U.S. Supreme Court its Article I legislative authority delegated to the U.S. Congress by the People of the United States;
  • had no authority to make law to infringe freedom of speech, and thus could not re-delegate such a right to infringe.
And, the U.S. Supreme Court consistently rules in 1st Amendment cases that any content-based regulation of speech is subject to strict scrutiny.

But - a branch of the government, the U.S. Supreme Court, is allowed to make a rule making it a criminal contempt to criticize itself?  

And this is in the supposedly democratic United States of America in the 21st century?

So, how will we make the powerful 3rd branch, the judicial branch, accountable if judges are involved in misconduct and corruption, if:

  • they gave themselves a gift of absolute immunity for malicious and corrupt acts;
  • they gave themselves a gift allowing them, as alleged victims of a crime of "criminal contempt of court", to 
    • initiate criminal proceedings against their critics;
    • appoint prosecutors, private or public, those whose livelihood they completely and totally regulate through licensing; and 
    • adjudicate such crimes?

And, note that judicial corruption is now rampant, people who raise that issue are targeted and punished, no present political candidates - President Trump included - made eradication of judicial corruption as their campaign promise, and those who do criticize judges and do make eradication of judicial corruption their campaign pledge, are being prevented from practicing law for their efforts?

In 2013, the prominent constitutional scholar Eugene Volokh condemned criminal prosecution of a pro se litigant for criticizing a judge.  Of course, in 2015, the same Eugene Volokh ducked at the opportunity to voice to the U.S. Supreme Court that professional prosecution of an attorney on the same grounds of reasonable criticism of a judge is unconstitutional - but everybody has their limits of courage, especially on a topic that may involve their own livelihood.

In view of tremendous powers of courts to take away life, liberty, property, children, ruin careers, make people destitute, people are afraid to speak out against court corruption.

Instead, we see crowds of journalists and commentators in the social media treating obviously corrupt judicial decisions as Gospel and shredding commentators who dare to raise the issue of such bias and corruption - as long as court corruption is targeting individuals that the crowds do not like.

Apparently, it is not prohibited, and it will not constitute criminal contempt to praise corrupt court decisions.

So, is the American public aware that its 1st Amendment is no more in the American courts?

That judges who swear to uphold it as the condition of taking the bench, gave themselves a carte blanche to put you in jail for exercising it - by criticizing their own misconduct?

And, where are the crowds, the petitions to fight this blatant violation of the 1st Amendment and freedom of speech?  This rule by which American federal courts gave themselves the right to prosecute people for seditious libel, for criticism of the government?

But, silencing a discussion is, as Judith Koffler, author of the law review article I interlinked above, state, is an equivalent of claiming infallibility - that the judiciary is never wrong.

And, if we punish for criticism of a judge, it means that criticizing this particular branch of the government, that undertook to police criticism against itself, is "constructive treason".

Are we still in a democracy?

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Reaction of the press and the public to the presidential pardon of Joe Apraio and the farce of the criminal case U.S.A. v Arpaio. Do we need the rule of law or do we only need it for people we like?

Since election of Donald Trump, the concept of the "rule of law", and what people of this country consider and are prepared to accept as the rule of law, has undergone a radical transformation.

Judges refuse to follow their own precedents, statutory law, accepted rules of evidence and pleadings, as well as rules of standing and jurisdiction - only to find against Trump.

Public comments on social media brand "everything Trump" as bad, and anything "against Trump" as good.

Yesterday, President Trump pardoned Joe Arpaio who was convicted of a felony criminal contempt in a bench trial by U.S. District Judge Susan R. Bolton, a Bill Clinton appointee.

Because of this identity politics substituting the rule of law since Trump's election, across federal courts in the U.S., reaching up to the U.S. Supreme Court, and because of my own knowledge and experience as to how politicized (and corrupt) court proceedings operate in this country, I got interested as to, what exactly was the essence of criminal contempt proceedings against Joe Arpaio.

With that in mind, I purchased the docket report of the criminal contempt case against Joe Arpaio from and reviewed relevant documents in it.

What struck me in these proceedings is the blatant bias and disregard of the applicable law, including jurisdictional and constitutional law, by the trial judge and her clear political bend and pre-judgment of the case.

For example, initially there were more defendants than just Joe Arpaio - which the docket I downloaded today did not reflect, but documents inside it did.

Somewhere during these proceedings, a motion was made to dismiss the whole case against all defendants because all events were barred by the 1-year statute of limitations.

Judge Bolton had NO CHOICE, but to apply the law and dismiss proceedings.

And, she did that - as to all defendants, but Joe Arpaio.  Here is her order of dismissal.

Here is Judge Bolton's legal analysis of the claim that criminal charges against ALL defendants are precluded by the statute of limitations:

So, based on Judge Bolton's legal analysis, criminal charges against all defendants must be dismissed.  Right?  

Here is her conclusion.

Here is the "order to show cause" that Judge Bolton decided to prosecute - as a felony, as the docket states, while dismissing all charges on the same grounds against all other defendants, and let's compare that order to show cause (Doc. 36) with the initial accusatory instrument (Doc. 1).

The problem with substituting Judge Snow's order to commence criminal proceedings against Joe Arpaio (in addition that it is not an indictment of the grand jury, which was a jurisdictional defect and a violation of the 5th Amendment) by the order of Judge Bolton, the TRIAL judge in the case, is that by prosecuting Joe Arpaio on HER OWN order and by adjudicating that case in a bench trial (over the defendant's objection), Judge Bolton put herself into the role of accuser-adjudicator - which the U.S. Supreme Court specifically prohibited in June of 2015 in Williams v Pennsylvania.

By signing the accusatory instrument, Judge Bolton clearly put herself into the position of both accuser and adjudicator.

Did Joe Arpaio's attorneys raise that issue?


Did Joe Arpaio's attorneys make a motion to recuse Judge Bolton? 

No, one group of Joe Arpaio's attorneys bowed out of the case, and the group that came as a replacement lamely applied for a motion for a "change of venue" claiming that local press coverage will unduly inflame "the court" - while such arguments are usually made as to the jury pool and not a judge presiding over a bench trial.  The motion, of course, was denied by Judge Bolton.

Yet, when a criminal defendant is facing a bench trial, and the judge is as obviously biased and is pre-judging the case the way Judge Bolton did, the only possible motion is a motion to recuse.

Which, apparently, was a problem for Joe Arpaio's attorneys (Batch # 1 to make, for obvious reasons - because to make a motion to recuse may result in loss of attorney license, as it happened to this criminal defense attorney, the 1st Amendment and due process and duty to the client to make such a motion be damned.

In other words, attorneys are simply afraid to make motions to recuse for fear of losing their livelihood when the judge, and the judicial system regulating attorneys retaliate, instead, they bowed out.

Can we blame them?  I do not know.  They did have an obligation to make that motion, and should not have undertaken representation of this defendant if they were afraid to provide that representation in full, all that was required by the circumstances.  I do understand their fear, though - very much so, since I myself lost my law license for making motions to recuse a judge, and know how very real this possibility is.

So, Joe Arpaio was prosecuted for a felony without an indictment by the grand jury, as is required for felonies and "heinous crimes" by the 5th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, but based on an order of the trial judge who conducted a bench trial over his objection, which is a DOUBLE jurisdictional violation.

And, even though Judge Bolton tried to wiggle out of the sticky issue of the statute of limitations, Joe Arpaio's attorneys, Batch # 2, kept jamming it down her throat:

Arpaio's attorneys from Batch # 2 showed a spectacular courage, especially in view of a very real possibility of losing their licenses if they make allegations of judicial bias and misconduct, by stating this in their motion to vacate and reconsider the judgment of conviction (interlinked above):


These attorneys

deserve recognition for their courage.

Why wasn't Joe Arpaio given a jury trial when he was so obviously entitled to it, especially that the charge was a felony?

It is more difficult to convict with a jury - which has to be unanimous, and may very well result in a mistrial, given public support of a large portion of population of Joe Arpaio.

Was it a political decision for the judge, a Clinton appointee, to deny Joe Arpaio his lawful right to a jury trial?

I have no doubt about that.

What was going to happen to Joe Arpaio after the verdict - which the judge did not even care to pronounce in front of a defendant, but simply sent by an e-mail notification to his attorneys, in violation of existing law?

He had bleak chances on appeal, even though the law was on his side - because the 9th Circuit has already demonstrated that it does not want to interfere, when Arpaio filed a jurisdictional petition for a writ of mandamus, most likely on political grounds.

He had even bleaker chances with the U.S. Supreme Court since its review is discretionary, and it takes only 70 cases a year from over 8,000 petitions filed.

So, was President Trump justified in giving Joe Arpaio a pardon?

I do not know.

There are many enraged articles in the so-called "mainstream media" and enraged public comments on social media that President Trump defied the law in giving that pardon.


1) he didn't, because he had authority to give the pardon; and
2) he didn't, because by giving that pardon he UNDID AN INJUSTICE, not created it - since criminal proceedings against Joe Arpaio were unlawful, unconstitutional and void on many grounds, as described above.

Was Joe Arpaio wrong in racial profiling of Latinos and holding them in inhumane conditions, which some victims called a "tent concentration camp"?  If that is true, of course, he was.

But, the criminal charge was not about that, it was about contempt of court, of a certain court decision, which also had to be proven, beyond the reasonable doubt, to be lawful - while Judge Bolton, according to pleadings of Joe Arpaio's lawyers, PRESUMED that the decision of Judge Snow that was the basis of criminal contempt, was lawful,

instead of making the U.S. Attorney's office PROVE it beyond the reasonable doubt.

The question is - do we want the rule of law in this country.

And, if we do, what do we understand by the rule of law?

Does it mean politically correct judicial decisions that pander to the views of whoever shouts louder and has more "presence" in the press and social media?

Or does it mean meticulously following the U.S. Constitution, the federal law, the precedents not inconsistent with the U.S. Constitution and written federal laws, including the rules of evidence - irrespective of the identity of the defendant?

I saw on social media that any attempt to make a reasonable comment about Arpaio's criminal case which does not agree that President Trump is a vile "Agent Orange" and a racist who pardoned a racist - but that the president vacated by pardon an already void criminal proceeding, which was made void by the presiding judge who screwed the criminal justice process at every turn - meets with allegations of racism against the commentator.

Yet, if we want the true rule of law in this country, if we want people to respect the law because it is based on that rule of law, and not on the rule of men (and women), which is what decisions in Judge Bolton's courts appear to be, then we cannot do what Judge Bolton did in criminal proceedings - break the law at every turn in order to arrive at a decision which she most certainly politically coveted.

The rule of law is blind as to identity of the defendant.

It has to be followed no matter what.

It was not followed in Joe Arpaio's case.

Had it been followed - by the U.S. Attorney's office and by the judge - the President may not have felt so compelled to undo the injustice of a criminal conviction in a proceedings which were thoroughly fixed.

I know that both the names of President Trump and of Joe Arpaio are red rags for many people, and their blind rage blocks them from even considering that a criminal conviction is only lawful when criminal procedure was followed in full to obtain it.

But, the rule of the crowd never equaled the rule of law.

Friday, August 25, 2017

Florida 3rd CIrcuit Court of Appeals Judges Ivan F. Fernandez,Thomas Logue and Edwin A. Scales, III - we cannot disqualify our longtime personal friend, no way

I wrote on this blog about impropriety of attorneys and court employees listed as Facebook friends of judges in whose court they appear, land implications as to the judge's impartiality in giving such attorneys lucrative assignments, ruling in their favor, or assigning certain FB friends-stenographers who may then conveniently fix court transcripts for the chance of their employment security.

Specifically, I wrote about Facebook friends of the law clerk of Judge Kevin Dowd, of the Chenango County Supreme Court (who has made her friend list private after I ran the blog) and of the Albany County Family Court judge Sue Kushner.

The problem exists not only in New York, I guess, and many people are complaining.

In Florida, the judiciary decided to deal with the problem the usual way - declare that black is white, with the belief that such a declaration will take care of the problem.

Here is the full decision of the Florida 3rd District Court of Appeal on the subject of a judge's Facebook friends that, as the court decided, did not mandate the judge's recusal from the cases where those Facebook friends appeared in front of him as attorneys of record.

The decision has such interesting details that it is definitely worth deciphering.

First of all, the FB friend in question was not simply a Facebook friend of the judge, but was also a former judge himself, clearly suggesting that the attorney and the judge are former colleagues:


was not simply a Facebook friend of the "trial judge" that the decision is, conspicuously, too shy to name.

He also advertises himself as having been a judge for 30 years, and having been a Circuit Court Judge of the Eleventh Judicial Circuit of Florida, appointed by former Governor Jeb Bush, for 8 years, from August 14, 2003 to his retirement on May 22, 2011.

Yet, the petition clearly identifies the unnamed "trial judge" of the court order, as 11th Circuit Court Judge Beatrice Butchko.

Here is Judge Butchko's biography posted on her official website:

Judge Butchko reports that she has been an "Assistant State Attorney, Miami-Dade County, for the years 1989-2000.

Retired Judge (now private attorney appearing in front of Judge Butchko and Judge Butchko's Facebook friend) Israel Reyes reports that 

"[f]rom 1980 until 1995, he was a police officer/detective with the Miami-Dade Police Department where (during various times) he worked in the Homicide Bureau, Media Relations Section, and Special Investigations Division’s Criminal Conspiracy and Racketeering Squads.  He served in the Organized Crime Bureau (where he was one of the principal investigators in the San Pedro corruption case); U.S. Secret Service Task Force; Police Applicant Background Investigation Unit; Firearms Training Section; and Uniform Patrol Division, earning numerous commendations and awards including the Employee Excellent Award."

So, from 1989 to 1995, for 6 years, Judge Butchko was a prosecutor and attorney (and former judge) Reyes was a police officer in the same county.

For 15 years they were most likely not just close, but joined at the hip, as Detective Reyes' performance on the stand as a police witness had to seal convictions and promotions for prosecutor Butchko.

That's one reason why her name was not mentioned in the decision - because in the decision judges pretended to "look the other way" and not see the conflict of interest that was SCREAMING at them.

Even if we do a collective lobotomy and even theoretically presume that a judge will not rule for a fellow judge,

even if that fellow judge is now a retired judge,

the fact the judge was a colleague of attorney Reyes in a pair of prosecutor/detective for 6 years, which working relationship was so successful that they both became judges soon after, that these two were in a close working relationship and their mutual careers depended on each other's performance for 6 years, and that she was Judge Reyes' colleague on the 11th Circuit Court for 5 years, from 2006 when she was appointed to 2011 when he retired - those lumps of evidence could be overlooked only willingly.

In its decision, the court took an extremely narrow position, reviewing only this issue:

and disregarding the actual history of working relationship that accompanied the "Facebook friendship" of these two.

What the court also completely forgot is the sense of propriety.

The court cited prudential considerations in a situation where a constitutional right to an impartial judicial review was involved and the convenience of the court administration was irrelevant:

The court hypocritically decided that when a judge and an attorney are Facebook friends, in an of itself, that is not a reason for disqualification of the judge

For these three reasons:

1) Because, supposedly, "some people have thousands of Facebook 'friends'"

The court did identify #JudgeBeatriceButchko in the decision and did not consider how many FB friends she actually had.

I was unable to locate Judge Beatrice Butchko's profile on Facebook, so it is likely that she has hidden or deleted her profile, and made her list of FB friends private - which begs a question, why?  If she did not do anything wrong?

2) Because, supposedly, "Facebook members often cannot recall every person they have accepted as 'friends' or who have accepted them as 'friends'" - which certainly was not the case here, and the court did not even go into verification whether Judge Butchko was aware that she accepted her former colleague of 11 years in two different jobs and an attorney appearing in a contested case as a Facebook friend:

3) Because, supposedly, some people may accept some Facebook friend on the basis of data-mining suggestions by Facebook itself - while that was certainly not the case here, and the court did not trouble itself to verify whether there outlandish proposition that former Detective Reyes and former Judge Reyes ended up on Judge Butchko's Facebook friend list as a result of Facebook's own data-mining.

So, because of these three SPECULATIONS, the court disregarded the ACTUAL appearance of impropriety in the ACTUAL relationship of the judge with her ACTUAL twice-colleague of 11 years.

Nice job, Florida's 3rd District Court of Appeals,
  • #JudgeIvanFFERNANDEZ, a former police officer who likely worked with both prosecutor Butchko and Detective Reyes during his career as a police officer and who could not pass up the chance of helping "his own"; 

  • #JudgeThomasLOGUE, former assistant County Attorney for Miami-Dade County from 1982 to 2012 who worked with Judge Butchko for 11 years and with attorney and former Judge Reyes (when he was a Police Detective in his county, obviously working in close contact with him, for 13 years from 1982 to 1995);

  • #JudgeEdwinASCALESIII, member of a Commission on Ethics, member of a Judicial Nominating Committee, representative of the Florida Judiciary in the Florida Bar Foundation Board of Directors, etc, etc.

So, the absolute majority of this appellate "panel", 2 out of 3 judges that decided a case about judicial disqualification of Judge Butchko from a case where attorney (and former detective, and former judge Reyes appeared as an attorney of record) ACTUALLY WORKED side by side with both Judge Butchko and Attorney Reyes - Judge Fernandez as a police detective himself, and Judge Logue as a prosecutor), and the third, the paragon of ethics, Judge Scales The Third (no pun intended) went along with the two crooks.

These two judges, Fernandez and Logue, were themselves disqualified from this case since they had ACTUAL knowledge as witnesses contrary to what they were speculating about.  They could be called as witnesses in an evidentiary hearing about this particular recusal - and most certainly could not preside over this decision.

And, of course, how can they possibly hurt the feelings of Judge Butchko, a longtime former colleague of their youth, a beautiful woman and a Secretary of the Florida Conference of Circuit Judges?

Is expecting any kind of elementary honesty from the judiciary a foregone conclusion?

How do they say it - you scratch my back and I scratch yours?

Utah county created an oversight panel for prosecutors - a first that, if followed, can change the criminal justice system

A group of residents of the Utah County demanded from the County Commissioners to establish a County Commission to oversee prosecutorial misconduct of county prosecutors - and the County has just announced that it has made its first steps towards establishing such a Commission.

Imagine if such commissions are established throughout the United States, at county levels - reviewing whether prosecutors committed unethical conduct (under the cover of the "absolute immunity" that courts unlawfully give them) - and if actual discipline may be imposed upon prosecutors because of decisions of such panels.

Maybe, just maybe, our criminal justice system will become a little less corrupt.

How about asking your own county for such a panel?

The rising "shining star" of Delaware County government - Acting Sheriff Craig DuMond and his record of integrity and competence

I have posted today an article about the retiring Delaware County (NY) Sheriff Thomas Mills and his mysterious sudden retirement before expiration of his elected term - and about the possible reasons for such a "retirement" which surely looks like a resignation to a reasonable observer.

At the end of that article, I posted a flurry of well-wishes to the retiring Sheriff Mills and to his replacement, the previous Undersheriff, and the future Acting Sheriff Craig DuMond.

The well-wishers praised Mills and DuMond for their integrity, competence, and claimed that Delaware County was and is going to be in very good hands.

Of course, regular lawsuits against Delaware County police and social services for egregious violations of people's constitutional rights come non-stop, and the recent several lawsuits:
  • two involving the nephew of the District Attorney's investigator Derek Bowie,
  • one about starving a  pre-trial detainee as punishment, and
  • one about fabricating a felony child sex abuse case against a Hispanic legal immigrant, a deportable offense,
and the fact that the county has been "suffering" sudden "retirements" and "resignations" of many elected and appointed officials for the last 3 years during the audit by New York State Comptroller, investigation of the New York State Commission for Judicial Conduct and the supposedly ongoing FBI investigation of the county - brings a different perspective to this flurry of "retirements".

As to the replacement of Thomas Mills, Craig DuMond has interesting history of, let's say, integrity that shines him not as an upstanding public official, but as a self-serving corrupted thug who just got a better access at the public funds that he considers his to have.

Just two years ago, I reported that DuMond, without public bidding, "trained" the Sheriff's Department "horseback police force", while stabling the Department's horses in his own private stables.

Interestingly, but not surprisingly, The Walton Reporter that initially reported that, deleted the link to that particular article.

Other sources at the time, reported this "graduation" of Delaware County police officers, DuMond included, from a week-long "certification course" - without mentioning that the horses are stabled at DuMond's own horse farm.

Nor was the "certification" of "horseback police patrol" announced in any official news releases on the Delaware County Sheriff's website - and do we really need to wonder, why?

Once again, JUST AFTER the New York State Comptroller finished the audit pointing out to the County the inappropriateness of dishing out contracts without public bidding, Undersheriff Craig DuMond dished out a contract to stable horses for "horseback patrol" - to himself and his wife.  Without public bidding.

Obviously counting on the fact that nobody will give a damn as to what he is doing as long as he pleases enough people in power to cover up for him.

Then, just recently, DuMond came up with a great statement for the Walton Reporter claiming that Delaware County Sheriff's Department had always rented its police officers to patrol the Delaware County Fair, while admitting that the fair grounds are private property (rented by the Fair Council for the duration of the fair each year).

Imagine that you, as a private individual, hire Delaware County police officers to guard your business for a little extra pay.

What if you then commit a crime - wouldn't it be a little awkward for Delaware County Sheriff's deputies, who were paid by you for their services for you as security officers, to investigate and prosecute you?

That same conflict of interest exists in Delaware County Sheriff's Department renting their officers for ground patrol of Delaware County Fair, during County time, for an extra fee.

And, you know what else was interesting at the Delaware County Fair this year?

As reported to me by people who visited it - the total lack of horseback police.

Not one of them.

While DuMond announced that horseback police (with horses stabled at his private property, obviously at the County expense, without a public bidding contract) is necessary for "crowd control" - specifically at the Delaware County Fair.

For those of my readers who do not know the specifics of Delaware County, New York, it is a very rural, very wooded, very large county with very sparse population, where there are more deer and bears than people, and where the claim of a need for "crowd control" is simply ridiculous.

The only two times that anything approximating the definition of a "crowd" happens in Delaware County is:

1) Fair on the Square in the County seat, Delhi, NY, which happens every Friday for 4 Fridays, starting with the 4th of July; and

2) the Delaware County Fair.

Yet, horseback police do not appear at either of these events, so, very likely it was just an excuse to hire a friend and pay him for a "certification" course, as well as to have the police some free riding lessons at public expense and to pocket the money for upkeep of horses.

After all, when everybody who counts loves you and thinks you are a shining star of integrity, like the Delaware County Clerk Debra Goodrich (who is supposed to be neutral since she is the clerk of the County, criminal, court, and the Sheriff's personnel testify in that court as witnesses)

who can prevent you from living the life of a corrupt thug that you are used to?

Did the sudden "retirement" of Delaware County (NY) Sheriff Thomas Mills due to public exposure of Delaware County Sheriff's Department for starving prisoners in the Delaware County jail as punishment, engaging in raging nepotism, employing abusive and incompetent cops and having his Department concoct fabricated criminal charges against people?

Usually, public officials in Delaware County (New York) sit tight in their positions (appointed or elected) and nothing can upend them.

After all, they are paid, with benefits, whether they are doing their job or not, and they are employing vast clans of relatives and friends to support, so there is a "moral obligation" to those clans to keep on going.

Yet, recently, as I wrote before, there was a tide of "retirements" from appointed and elected public officials in Delaware County - which curiously coincided with:

  • the audit of the county by the New York State Comptroller - around the time of investigation and release of the audit, FOUR public officials that may have been involved "retired":
    • Delaware County Attorney Richard Spinney;
    • Delaware County Attorney Porter Kirkwood;
    • Delaware County Commissioner of Social Services William Moon, and
    • Delaware County Judge and former Assistant Delaware County Attorney for Social Services Carl F. Becker;
  • the investigation by the New York State Commission for Judicial Conduct - the same Carl F.Becker "retired" from his judicial position long before the end of his term and long before his mandatory retirement at 70, after fighting tooth and claw for that "re-election" (documents that he was elected the first time in 2002 were never properly filed, and my law license was suspended when I raised the issue of Becker's legitimacy in court) - while the New York State Commission for Judicial Conduct reported in its annual report that several judges "retired"/resigned during investigation;  Becker had many complaints against him, as I know as a blogger who received tips from people complaining about him;
  • a criminal complaint - Delaware County Clerk Sharon O'Dell
    quickly "retired" in 2016 when I filed a criminal felony complaint against her (which did not result in charges yet) for knowingly filing a false multi-thousand-dollar judgment against me in collusion with attorney (and town justice) Jonathan S. Follender;
  • an FBI investigation - Delaware County Chairman of Board of Supervisors James Eisel.

As a result of a settlement in a lawsuit, in December of 2015 the very Democratic Governor of the State of New York Andrew Cuomo announced that prisoners in New York State prisons will no longer be "treated" to what amounts to a punishment through starvation - the so-called "loaf".

Apparently, Delaware County jail practiced starvation of its prisoners, and that same starvation as punishment continued further - as evidenced by a pro se lawsuit filed in January of 2017 against the Delaware County. 

While the lawsuit was dismissed, it was dismissed without prejudice, and can be renewed, especially that Darryl Bradshaw's conviction was reversed and vacated and he was released from state prison.

Since Mr. Bradshaw filed his lawsuit from state prison, it is apparent that he was not serving time in Delaware County Jail, but was held there as a pre-trial detainee.

His lawsuit also mentions that he filed multiple grievances against Delaware County jail, raising the issue whether he was starved in retaliation for those grievances.

The lawsuit also asserts that "disciplinary starvation" of Mr. Bradshaw was ordered without following the "normal procedure", whatever the "normal procedure" may be for ordering starvation of a pre-trial detainee as punishment.

So, whether the lawsuit is or is not renewed, Thomas Mills' Department was exposed for starving pre-trial detainees.

Mills' Department was also earlier exposed, in a lawsuit that ended up with a settlement on the eve of trial, for hiring police officers outside of Delaware County (a jurisdictional violation arguably rendering all their arrests legally void), with local kinship and connections to high-ranking employees in Delaware County government substituting for education, training and character fitness.

Yet another lawsuit against the Delaware County, currently pending, alleges that the Delaware County investigators from Social Services and Sheriff's Departments fabricated a false criminal charge of felony child sexual abuse (a deportable offense) against a Hispanic legal immigrant. which can promise Delaware County taxpayers a hell of a lot of damages to have to pay out, whether the case goes to trial or is settled.

The fact that the Delaware County's litigation attorney hired by its insurance carrier, the Frank Miller Firm, and chose to remove the case from Delaware County Supreme Court to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of New York, the fact that Delaware County did not trust Delaware County Supreme Court to resolve this lawsuit in its favor (even though it recently fixed for the same Frank Miller firm a lawsuit against a police officer for vehicular assault on a resident of Delaware County, where a criminal case was fabricated against the victim of assault and where criminal charges were also finally dismissed), says that the Delaware County sees the writing on the wall as to how bad the fallout for it may be.

Of course, the Delaware County has filed a motion to dismiss that lawsuit "for failure to state a claim", which is currently pending, but it appears that there is enough in the complaint to survive that motion.

Also, it has been announced in the press back in January of 2017 that the FBI is investigating the former Commissioner of Social Services William Moon - and, consequently, the Delaware County Department of Social Services.

This particular lawsuit alleges, in sum, that

  • Delaware County Sheriff's Department employees participated together with Margaretteville School District Employees, New York State Child Abuse Register and Delaware County Department of Social Services, in
  • forensic interviews of a child without presence, knowledge or consent of her mother;
  • while not using proper interviewing techniques;
  • while not video- or audio-recording MULTIPLE successive interviews;
  • while trying to coerce the child by leading questions to accuse her uncle of sexual child abuse, which the child denied.
Since the uncle is a Hispanic LEGAL immigrant, and the fabricated charges were for a D felony, a deportable offense and a heinous crime that, on conviction, would have required a lifetime registration and loss of multiple civil rights, and being branded as a child molester - which also presented a risk to the plaintiff's life - the lawsuit is pretty bad, and has implications of racism, same as removal of a protestor from the County Fair grounds where the County police was present, on County time, as paid private security officers.

Of course, if the case ever gets to trial, this plaintiff can also use against Delaware County all the documents from the previous lawsuit against Derek Bowie, the Delaware County's "Deputy Sheriff" who was hired simply because his uncle was a longtime investigator for the Delaware County District Attorney, and was not fired until he assaulted, as alleged in respective lawsuits, not just one, but TWO women, and those women, interestingly, looked alike - until the lawsuit by one of the women went to trial (and forced the county to settle right before trial for an undisclosed amount).

Upon information and belief, Bowie was fired from the Delaware County Sheriff's Department, but was readily picked up by the Davenport Police Department, so now people in Davenport need to be aware - and afraid - of a potentially volatile and murderous cop in their midst, see his salary before he was fired in 2016:

and after he was fired mid-2016 and picked up by the Deposit Police force, losing more than 2 times in salary as compared to $51,614 that he's got in his last full year of unlawful employment with the Delaware County:

What tipped the plate of Sheriff Mills to remove himself from his elected position:

  • removed a woman from the fair grounds for "public disturbance" - for photographing merchandise, Confederate flags, which were on public display -

we will, probably, never know.

But, something triggered his resignation, as elected public officials do not SUDDENLY decide to retire, before the end of their terms, unless there is a SUDDEN reason for that.

And there are plenty of reasons for Thomas Mills not to honorable retire, but to be dishonorably impeached and sued for all the misdeeds he allowed his employees to commit under his watch.

Of course, Mills, as well as local government officials - and Mills' friends and supporters - tried to present it as an honorable retirement after a long "public service".

But, the less "public servants" like Thomas Mills we will have, who, among other things: 
the better.

otherwise he feels free to trample it, as long as it suits him and the clans of employees that he employs.

As to the glorious replacement of Sheriff Mills - The Acting County Sheriff Craig DuMond, a "shining star" of integrity and competence, I will run a separate blog.

Stay tuned.